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February 20 Wednesday

Dr. Violeta Moreno-Lax, "The (Intersectional) 'Right to Flee' Under International Law"

  • Wednesday, February 20, 2019 at 12:10PM - 1:45PM
  • SLB Room 129
  • Open To The Public
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States the world-over tend to negate the existence of a right to asylum, taking support on the non-binding character of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and the elusive wording of its Article 14. They also usually rely on a (mis-)understanding of non-refoulement as having no extraterritorial bearing and protecting only against undue expulsion from within State jurisdiction -  thus usually after the person concerned would have (somehow) reached the destination country's territory. They deny that the principle may impose a limit on States' prerogatives to control their borders remotely to curtail unwanted migratory flows. The focus of this session will be to challenge this view, re-examining the jus-generative power of the prohibition of refoulement as and when it intersects with the right to leave any country including one's own. It will be argued that the effect of this encounter should be understood to amount to the recognition of an individual right to flee (from ill-treatment / persecution / serious harm) that is opposable to both the country of origin and countries of destination in a legally-binding form.    

Dr. Violeta Moreno-Lax is Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in Law, founder of the Immigration Law programme, and inaugural co-Director of the Centre for European and International Legal Affairs (CEILA) at Queen Mary University of London.  She has published widely in the areas of international and European refugee and migration law, including her recent monograph: Accessing Asylum in Europe (Oxford University Press, 2017), and regularly consults for the EU institutions and other organisations active in the field. Her latest work on Humanitarian Visas has formed the basis of the Resolution adopted by the Plenary of the European Parliament in December 2018. And her research on extraterritorial jurisdiction and maritime rescue substantiates the reasoning of the case of S.S. and Others v. Italy, pending in front of the European Court of Human Rights, denouncing the ‘pull back’ policy of refoulement by proxy undertaken by Italy in the Mediterranean via the Libyan Coast Guard.

Sponsoring Organization(s)

Schell Center for International Human Rights